Project cars are expected to have everything on them that will fit. After all, if you're a tuner you have to show off your wares. (One of ec's older projects was once described as looking like it was "magnetized and driven through Pep Boys." Particularly painful for me, since I built that car).

Often the applied "technology" is merely skin deep. We call these cars "parts hangers." Not so with this red Jetta IV from New Dimensions. Sure, the usual cosmetic stuff is there-a full line of appealing Isotta goodies, including a leather steering wheel cover for airbag-equipped steering wheels, a leather shift boot with titanium-look trim, de rigueur billet shift knob and door sill plates and Color Edge floor mats. ND billet door lock knobs complete the interior changes, all stylish and well made.

Exterior aesthetic touches are subtle yet provide effective clues to the car's performance potential. Kamei supplied the sharp front spoiler, sport grille and headlamp "eyelids." The Trimsport "Supercharged" emblem is the most obvious indicator that something special separates ND's red Jetta from the crowd.

Under the hood is a Z-Engineering supercharged VR6 with GIAC chip and fuel management software, providing an estimated 270 hp at the crank. Wow. ND spent a good deal of time and effort working with Z-Engineering as the VR6 kit was developed, and the results are stunning (see sidebar). Few Jettas have ever brought this much power to the table.

Yet, surprisingly, all that power isn't obnoxious-not even when you put your foot down. The engine is smooth, and the only serious change in sound level is a loud purr from the Jetex exhaust-the Z-Engineering supercharger is a quiet unit for a change. If anything, driveability is enhanced with the engine mods-the same good low-end torque as stock, and then it all just takes off from there. It's a blast to drive.

The Jetta IV provides a stout, stiff platform as a starting point, but the added power pushes the stock suspension and brakes to the outer edge of their envelopes. ND upgraded to KW Variant 2 coilover suspension with a Neuspeed front anti-roll bar, and fit the elegant TSW "Sting" wheels-seriously large 8x18-inchers shod with massive 225/40-18 Toyo Proxes T1-S tires. This setup clearly establishes the car as an ber Jetta.

Those 18-in. wheels aren't just there for good looks. More power means more brakes are a good idea, so New Dimensions offers up a whole lot more brakes. Up front sit 330mm discs fitted with AP four-piston calipers. I whipped out my calculator and figured 12.99 in. and change-making these binders just about all you'd ever need, even with 270 supercharged hp.

I've seen some wild stuff from New Dimensions in the past-too many interesting projects to even begin to list. All have offered something interesting to VW owners looking to personalize their cars' looks and performance. This eclipses them all-and just a word to the other guys: New Dimensions has raised the bar. Who'll be the next to jump higher?

Basic Black: Six-Beater On BoostWhen is a four better than a six? When it's supercharged for starters. And when you're trying to get around a corner quickly for another. Compact as it may be, a VR6 sits hundreds of pounds heavier than a VW four on the front of a car. That weight does not help when you're all set to carve canyons or take fast time of the day. Enter the boost.

By James Sly
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